We moved East along the coast to a site near Zahora. Having taken a walk around Zahora we concluded that there might be lots of second homes there and maybe some people, but given everything was behind high walls and gates we couldn’t really tell. It was thus, soul less and I guess being off season, to be expected.
However, we did discover to our shameful ignorance that the coastline there, is where the Battle of Trafalgar took place, in 1805. There were some clues, The Trafalgar Bay, The Trafalgar Beach, The Trafalgar Lighthouse need I go on…. The coastline there was deserted, too many rocks for the surfer dudes but the sea was incredible. It seemed that two directions of waves were joining in a V shape leading to some incredible crashes and shapes.
Not sure it was there in Nelson’s day but we found a shack that did great street food, surprisingly a first on this trip. A veggie breakfast later and we were ready for an epic, or in my case, cycling proficiency stage 2. A steep climb took us to a National Park inland from Los Canos de Meca. Riding through the trees was fun until we got to a section called “Pista de la Cuesta de los Arrumbales” which became somewhat sandy, so it wasn’t mud this time that we were covered in. The translation by the way is “Track Slope of the Wrinkles” according to my app, not sure about wrinkles, more like cellulite! Anyway, we pushed on through and made it up a gorgeous town called Vejer de la Frontera. A hilltop town, high up with intact Castle Walls, white Moorish style buildings, several ancient churches and convents and lots of cafes! Looking at the architecture, you can see the stages of styles and cultural influences. It has panoramic views of agriculture and various groves. It also still has an annual “running of the bulls” (glad we didn’t see that!) Had very typical Andalucian tiles everywhere including a super fountain. This place is no doubt on a tourist route in season, and it should be, its lovely and vibrant.
Couple of fun pictures here, Nick obviously didn’t realise where he was stood on one and the other is for Alison Ferris, a superb portrait photographer who I had in mind when taking it!
The ride back down from the day in Vejer would be easier, right? Oh no, deciding we should take a different route so we could see more of the landscape, we discovered “The Tunnel of Doom”… no translation required. The pictures don’t show the half of it but put it this way, I didn’t have my feet on my pedals much! Actually the rest of the ride was varied and gorgeous, within the forest tree canopy and various tracks.
Another ride out, this time further West was to a workaday town called Conil but it was a super ride (and flat!) and it had a lovely old town. There’s nothing there particularly of note, the architecture has a fair amount of Moorish influence though, but given it was the weekend, there was a locals buzz at the old town bars, we joined in, naturally! We rode back along the beach road rather than €3.7m cycle track funded by the EU (€0.25m/km) All along the route were locals out for lunch and drinks at the plethora of bars and restaurants behind the sand at Playa del Palmar, combined with lots of kites and boards. Its a stretch of sand that no doubt is jam packed in season, with everything there to cater for it. Funnily enough we found cake… When we finally arrived back we were just in line for an early supper at Los Pinos, the local, Jigsaw had a treat as I took some tuna home for her. She posted on Insta after eating a big chunk in about 10 seconds. Anyhow, time to move on from waking up to birdsong in the tree canopy and explore Cadiz. I won’t be going to the local dentist anytime soon though…